Is the Dinoflagellate Amoebophrya… preview & related info


Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is a universal hallmark of aerobic eukaryotes. That is why the recent suggestion by John et al. (2019. An aerobic eukaryotic parasite with functional mitochondria that likely lacks a mitochondrial genome. Sci Adv. 5(4):eaav1110.) that the aerobic dinoflagellate Amoebophrya sp. strain AT5 (Syndiniales) lacks mtDNA was so remarkable. Here, by reanalyzing recently published genomic and transcriptomic data from three Amoebophrya strains, we provide evidence of a cryptic, highly reduced mtDNA in this clade. More work is needed before one can definitively say if Amoebophrya has or does not have an mtDNA, but for now, the data are pointing toward the existence of one. Ultimately, we urge caution when basing supposedly absent genomic features on single line evidences.

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